Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Poetry Blogging

O Sweet Irrational Worship

by Thomas Merton

Wind and a bobwhite
And the afternoon sun.

By ceasing to question the sun
I have become light,

Bird and wind.

My leaves sing.

I am earth, earth

All these lighted things
Grow from my heart.

A tall, spare pine
Stands like the initial of my first
Name when I had one.

When I had a spirit,
When I was on fire
When this valley was
Made out of fresh air
You spoke my name
In naming Your silence:
O sweet, irrational worship!

I am earth, earth

My heart's love
Bursts with hay and flowers.
I am a lake of blue air
In which my own appointed place
Field and valley
Stand reflected.

I am earth, earth

Out of my grass heart
Rises the bobwhite.

Out of my nameless weeds
His foolish worship.


clymela said...

thank you for this very deep poem. I loved Thomas Merton in a way he has been one of my guides in that I loved him deeply and read everything I could find by him. My personal favorite passage is found in his pre-priest days when he was comparing the Cuban image of Mother's Day and the American image. He pointed out that our images of "Mother" were of someone old enough to be grandmother or even great grandmother. He went on to discuss that this came about due to the American fear of sex nor wanting to hint at the sex involved in motherhood. This essay found in the early journal before entering the monestary shaped much of my outlook in the years to come. I was delighted to see his poetry here.

Hecate said...


Glad you liked it! I should look up that essay on Mother's Day; never read it. I love that he was both a mystic, removed from the world, and an activist, completely committed to changing the world.